Harry Potter: 10 Things That Happened Before the First Book

Harry Potter is definitely a series that will never end because the Potterheads are loyal to the boy wizard and also because JK Rowling never keeps giving us new information about the wizarding world that keeps us fascinated. These are some of the lesser known facts from the books along with some pieces of information and trivia that JKR dropped on Potterheads after the books ended and some facts from the cursed child:

The first Harry Potter aka Henry Potter:

Henry Potter, the paternal grandfather of James Potter and who inspired James and Lily to name their kid Harry was called Harry by his loved ones. Old Harry Potter was a part of the Wizengamot (judicial court for wizards and witches) from 1913-1921. He accused Archer Evermonde (Minister of magic in that era) of forbidding wizards to help muggles in the 1st world war. This courageous act by him caused quite a stir in the wizarding community.

James and Lily got married when they were teenagers:

If you have only watched the movies you might have assumed that Harry’s parents were at least 30 when they died because the actors who played them looked mature but that is not true. James and Lily got married at the age of 19 and Harry was born a year later. The sad part, however, is that they died at the age of just 21.

Voldemort applied at Hogwarts to become a school teacher:

A lot of people don’t know that Tom Riddle’s dream job was actually being a teacher at Hogwarts. He wished to teach defense against the dark arts and applied to be a teacher as soon as he graduated from Hogwarts. Dumbledore knew that if Tom had influence over young minds he would manipulate his power so he turned him down saying he was too young to be a teacher at 17. Tom was so persistent that he came back after a few years seeking the same job but Dumbledore stepped in again and did not hire him.

Merope’s tragic story:

Voldemort’s mother Merope was in love with a muggle called Tom Riddle who didn’t love her back. She used a love potion to win him over and they got married. When Merope was pregnant she decided to stop using magic to seduce her husband, this resulted in Tom abandoning her. Merope was so disgusted with herself that she vowed never to use magic again and died of a broken heart.

Slytherin and Gryffindor were friends:


Since there are so many Slytherin vs Gryffindor rivalries in the series like Draco vs Harry, Severus vs James, people always assume that Godric Gryffindor and Salazar Slytherin were enemies. The truth is that the two founders were actually friends and were more alike than we think. The problem only arose when Slytherin brought his pureblood agenda into the selection of students.

The death of Helena Ravenclaw and the lost diadem:

The last book introduces us to Helena Ravenclaw, the daughter of Rowena Ravenclaw who was jealous of her mother’s brilliance and fame. To get her mother’s attention, Helena ran away and took her mother most prized possession with her. Helena stole the diadem and her mother sent Bloody Baron to retrieve both her daughter and the diadem. Helena died in the process and Rowena later died of a broken heart.

James and Lily financially supported Remus Lupin:

Remus Lupin’s life was always difficult and tragic as him being a werewolf was always seen as his biggest shortcoming and no amount of talent, kindness and intelligence couldn’t help him get a job after he graduated. James and Lily supported Lupin financially due to this as no one would hire him. His job as the defense against the dark arts professor was his first job and he got it because Dumbledore believed in his capability and kind heart.

Aurors were allowed to use unforgivable curses during the first wizarding war:

As we know death eaters and other evil wizards never think twice about using the unforgivable curses but other wizards are not allowed to do so in the series. During the first wizarding war, however, it was decided that the aurors would be given the authority to do so in order to fight the death eaters and other evil wizards. Alastor Moody is known for using the killing curse on many death eaters.

Ollivander revolutionized wand making:

Ollivander plays a key role in the series as the two wands he once made that shared the same core and phoenix feathers led to the connection between Harry and Voldemort. He also played a huge role in the history of wand making as earlier wizards chose their own wand cores and simply provided the wandmaker with the substance that they wanted to be their core. Ollivander came up with the idea that wand cores should be combined with different kinds of woods and that would give a unique identity to each wand and as a result, the wand will choose the wizard and not the other way round.

Minerva McGonagall’s tragic love story:

Harry Potter

Not much is known about the private life of the head of Gryffindor house in the books. JK Rowling released some extra information about the character later where she revealed that McGonagall fell in love with a muggle named Dougal Mcgregor when she was 18. She wanted to marry him but she felt that she couldn’t lie to him about her identity and telling the truth wasn’t an option due to the statue of secrecy. Dougal was later murdered in the wizarding war and McGonagall regretted not marrying him as she felt she might have saved him if she did.

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